Linda Strange

Obituary of Linda Joyce Strange

Linda Joyce (Hancock) Strange died on March 21st, 2021 in Smyrna, TN, at the age of 66 years old due to Covid-19. She died just 5 days after her husband of 44 years, Wayne O’Neill Strange, also died of Covid-19. She leaves behind many grieving family members and friends. Linda was born in Indianapolis, IN to Marvin Ray Hancock and Estelle Ellen (Lawrence) Hancock on April 4th, 1954. Linda grew up in Bloomington, IN, also spending some time in Amelia, OH. She attended Amelia High School as well Bloomington High School North, where she graduated in 1972. She married Wayne Strange on March 12th, 1977. Wayne and Linda moved a lot for the first several years they were married, but finally settled down for 20 years in Colstrip, MT. She loved her friends at the First Baptist Church of Colstrip, where she played the piano. Linda helped out at the church wherever she was needed, whether that be Awanas, Vacation Bible School, the kitchen, choir rehearsals, or driving the kids to church camp. She loved documenting her kids’ lives and church life with photography. Linda was a Girl Scout leader for several years, volunteered in her kids’ elementary school classes, and sporadically taught piano lessons. She went back to college as an adult, attending Eastern Montana College (now MSU-Billings) and receiving a degree in Business Administration & Accounting in 1992. Linda enjoyed attending her daughters’ basketball and volleyball games, as well as their piano, band, and choir performances. After college, she worked as a CNA at the Rosebud Healthcare Center in Forsyth, MT, and as a substitute teacher for Colstrip Public Schools. Known as “Nana” for the last 18 years, Linda left her beloved Colstrip, MT for middle Tennessee when her grandson Jake was a baby. She kept him while Jen worked from the time he was a year old until he started Kindergarten. Once Jake was in school, Linda started working at Julia’s Homestyle Bakery in Murfreesboro, TN, enjoying wonderful friendships while she decorated beautiful cookies for over a decade. Linda loved gardening and was an avid crafter, spanning what seemed like all of the different crafts available: sewing clothes, quilting, scrapbooking, card-making, embroidery, knitting, and crocheting. She even made some macrame plant holders in the late 70s. She loved to give hand-made gifts whenever someone had a baby or a special event, and just a month before her death, she hand-sewed a little quilt for her grand-daughter Izzy’s dolls. Linda was preceded in death by her daughter, Mary Ellen Strange; her husband; her parents; her beloved grandmother Lurena Elizabeth Lawrence, and siblings, James B. Hancock and Buddy E. Fielder. Linda is survived by her daughters: Kathy Strange and Jen Strange (Jason Francis), and Jen’s children: Jacob Mills and Isabella Francis. She also leaves behind siblings Stephen R. Hancock, Randall L. Hancock, Marc D. Hancock, Shari L. Montgomery, Dawn E. Hendricks, Bradley E. Hancock, and Christopher W. Hancock, as well as a gaggle of nieces and nephews. A memorial service will take place in Bloomington, IN, later this summer. Burial of ashes will follow at Valhalla Memory Gardens, also in Bloomington. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you consider a donation to your local library or to Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to help instill the love of reading and education in others for generations to come.
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